MS life expectancy discussed but not all treatments considered

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When talking about how treatments affect MS life expectancy, it’s wrong to leave out HSCT.

Sorry, but it’s just plain wrong. How can anyone write a supposedly authoritative article about MS and life expectancy, talk about modifying how the disease affects people who have it, yet totally ignore potentially the best treatment so far available?

That treatment, completely omitted from the said article is stem cell therapy in the form of autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, known as AHSCT or even HSCT.

Now, I have recently written about this exciting new treatment, which is enjoying tremendous success in patients paying for private treatment in Russia, Mexico, Israel, the Philippines and other places, too. In the UK, subject to strict criteria, the therapy is now being provided free of charge by the state’s National Health Service.

True, patients’ reports of tremendous progress in not only stopping the progress of the illness and in an increasing number of cases actually making improvements have not been clinically tested long term. But then, the same is true of new disease modifying drugs entering the scene.

They have been through various clinical trials but they, too, have not been tested over the long-term. What’s more, the side effects can be more than a little concerning.

‘Life expectancy and MS…’

Anyway, back to the article in question. ‘Called Life Expectancy and Multiple Sclerosis: What You Need To Know’, it was written by Kenneth J. Bender PharmD MA and published in Medical News Today1.

It reasonably says:

In the past, it had been estimated that multiple sclerosis (MS) shortens life expectancy by several years. According to one study published in Neurology, the life expectancy of people with MS is around 7-14 years lower than people without the condition.

Many factors affect life expectancy in people with MS. These include the patient’s age when their MS begins, how severe the illness is, how quickly it progresses, and what treatment they receive.

Newer treatments for MS and better management of complications now offer the potential of life expectancy that is no different than for those without MS. With “disease-modifying” therapies and rehabilitation, many people with MS can expect to live active lives with a lighter burden of symptoms than in the past.

It carries on:

New drugs for MS could improve the long-term outlook for people with MS. These drugs prevent the immune system from provoking the injury and inflammation in the nervous system.

Although immunotherapy products can be harmful to the body, they have been shown to reduce symptoms and offer the potential for long-term benefit.

Recent developments have broadened immunotherapy treatment options from injected drugs to two new products that can be taken by mouth.

Let me make it quite clear that I am not taking issue with anything in the article, just what is not mentioned. Even if clinical trials on HSCT are not complete, it should be recognized as a new and potentially winning treatment in our fight against MS. But, of course, there is no money (well not enough, anyway) for the big pharma companies if HSCT wins the day. It has already been noted that those who have gone through it no longer need the expensive disease modifying drugs2.



2 “Not a single patient required DMTs after therapies. They are taking nothing,” Dr Mark Freedman.

Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this blog article are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today and are only intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Multiple Sclerosis.

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Ian Franks is Managing Editor of the Columns division of BioNews Services. He has enjoyed a successful career as a journalist, from reporter to editor, in the print media; during which he gained a Journalist of the Year award in his native UK. He was diagnosed with MS in 2002 but continued working until mobility problems forced him to retire early in late 2006. He now lives in the south of Spain and uses his skills to write his own flourishing specialist MS, Health & Disability blog at Besides MS, Ian is also able to write about both epilepsy and cardiovascular matters from a patient’s perspective and is a keen advocate on mobility and accessibility issues.
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  1. tibri says:

    Exactly, all is done for hiding AHSCT and slowing its application to every MS sufferer. We have to inform investigational journalists of this scandal in order to boost the treatment agreement by EMEA for Europe. People suffering by this time, every minutes count when you’re disabling and suffering. It’s a shame.

  2. Shasha says:

    LDN may help the immune system/block hidden gluten/heal the gut lining and help 99% of MS people. It is $1 a day usually from Alternative doctors/compounding pharmacies. LDN is awesome help for me. Without it I feel like I am dying. It helps my eyes/adrenals/brain/gut lining/hearing and every cell of my brain/body.

    Lowering the immune system may let cancer happen. MS people may have low thyroid due to gluten. Gluten/dairy/soy/sugar/GMO may hurt…vitamins/good oils/minerals…probiotic…LDN…detoxing may help MS. Zinc/Mg/fish oil/Vit C/coenyzme Q10/rhodiola/Vit B12 methylcobalamin shot/intrinsic factor kind/strong probiotic before a meal/HCl and enzymes with meals/Nature’s plus- Source of life multiple/Vit D3 5000IU/5000mcg of biotin/coenyzmated B vitamins and more help me.

    I had a friend who took LDN and tried to go gluten etc free and is out of the wheel chair/got her driver’s license/is dating a new person/got two jobs/went sky diving/rides on the back of a motor cycle etc. She wants to have “fun” after being in the wheel chair so long.

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